To the editor: I had a gentle reminder a little while back on your forums of how difficult it is to bite one's tongue and remain respectful. I was "discussing" some WoW related lawsuit and near the end of it, I really just wanted to call the other guy out and settle it like (arguably immature) men. However, I remember quite a few times where undeniable idiots (maybe I'm one of them) have posted on your site and you guys have remained admirably levelheaded.
I'm just saying that I completely respect how The Escapist conducts itself with touchy subjects and opinionated people in an environment swarming with all walks of life. Very professional... and very appreciated.
Keep on truckin', Escapist. ;-)
In response to "Blowing up Galaxies" from The Escapist Forum: This article was actually a fairly good summation of the disastrous screwup that was SWG from pre-launch to post NGE. It even hammered on what was truly the most important lesson to be learned from the whole sordid tale, and that was NOT "don't change the game after launch", important though that lesson is. By far the most important lesson, and one which is all too often ignored or even denied by developers, is "don't release buggy, incomplete crap". Sony and SWG are the prize poster children for this lesson, and game developers refuse to learn this lesson at their peril.
In response to "Blowing up Galaxies" from The Escapist Forum: I thought the article was well written and an accurate representation of the nightmare SOE put its subscribers through.
At the end of the day those who, like myself, had been in game since Beta enjoyed the challenge that building a character offered. The diversity that the 250 point character template offered made it a challenge and required careful consideration in order to build a strong character template.
I was a Master Swordsman/Master Doctor that was a nearly invincible combination of capabilities. It was an epic accomplishment to unlock the force side of your character and build him up through the Jedi ranks. Aside from the treasured reward of unlocking the force in your character, being able to have a multifaceted character of your own design was what most veterans miss the most. I have been in and out of game at nearly every phase of the game and I can only say this, I truely do miss the original game. I still occasionally play the new versions as they are released, I do however find them lacking.
I for one AM one of those who does mistrust SOE and still feels betrayed at being sold out, and having all my efforts (and subscriber fees) wiped away on the basis of greed.
- Beebo Oprek
[a href="http://www.escapistmagazine.com/forums/read/6.42868]In response to "The Great Gaming Moral Panic" from The Escapist Forum:[/a] This has to be the most depressing article I've ever read regarding gaming, humanity, folk devils, and scapegoats. You always have to wonder if people will ever realize these things, and evolve beyond them. Is evolution even possible at this point of the human race? Can we, as a society, learn to be peaceful?
Closed societies and neighborhoods are the scariest when it comes to these subjects, and it seems that the same rules apply even on the global playing field. Imagine what will happen when we finally come in contact with aliens? Or when robots form their own society? The ignorant and fearful outcry will be fueled by greedy headline writers, as well as twisted experimenters that want to see the outcome. Its more than just fear that grips people, as the mixture of sadism, greed, and curiosity play a large role for people that have the power to make a difference for the better, but decide not to.
In response to "Will Bobba for Furni" from Then Escapist Forum: I think it is quite interesting to think in hypotheticals and discuss the differences and similaries between in game and physical rape, but juxtaposing an online rape victim with a physical, real-life rape victim is sick.
Speaking of theories is one thing, but using specific instaces with actual people, there is no comparison. Not one to be easily offended, I am actually a little offended here.
I understand the possible psychological stresses online assaults can have. I'm not ignorant when it comes to the fagility of the human mind. I won't discredit the damage that can be caused by in-game actions; however, it is more like harrassment than rape.
In response to "Will Bobba for Furni" from Then Escapist Forum: Sorry Russ, but this reads like hyperbole to me.
I'm surprised you didn't scream "Why won't someone think of the children!" at the end of it with a picture of Helen Lovejoy...
I suggest you read Gearoid Reidy's peace and get back to me, because all I see is you contributing to the absurd Moral Panic about video games and the internet.
In response to "Will Bobba for Furni" from Then Escapist Forum: Let's flip it around. Let's talk about whether phone sex is 'real' sex. Or whether in-game, *consensual* sex is 'real' sex.
If we decide that virtual sex is a form of real sex, why isn't virtual sex without consent a form of real rape, when the only line between sex and rape is consent? Or are we saying that consent *isn't* the only line between all sex and all rape? In other words, are we saying that rape is *some* forms of sex - the forms that involve physical contact of some degree - when consent is missing? Are we ready to do that, to tell one person 'your experience of sex without consent isn't rape,' while telling another person - a person with maybe *less* emotional damage both during the attack as well as afterwards in the form of long-term stress - that theirs was?
Maybe the issue here is that we're not working with a clear definition of rape in the real, off-line world to begin with. Isn't that always the case though? That the real problem with discussion of virtual/digital issues is that the issue is cloudy in the real world to begin with?